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Which 90mm Mak for tiny Apartment and travel?

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#126 RafaelP

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 11:49 AM

I will post some pictures when I get back from my trip.

#127 Cepheus Elf

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 07:59 PM

This has been a great thread...I'm now struggling to convince myself I don't need a c90!! :)

Clear skies!
Mick

#128 t.r.

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 08:40 AM

I think I've discovered my C90 impairment...that dang cruddy, cheap 90 degree diagonal Celestron sticks in packages. Do yourself a favor and throw this thing away! Next time out, I'm using a quality dielectric! However, the little C90 did show me a bald eagle flying gracefully on New Years Eve day. Around here, they are rarer than hen's teeth...a good omen for 2013!!!

#129 RafaelP

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 12:47 PM

It is very cold here in Vail, CO(~7500 feet.). It took out the C90 last night and let it cool for half an hour. Many more stars visible here than in midtown. Looking at Jupiter again, I couldn't seem to push the magnification past x62 without things fuzzing out. The Orion Nebula was bright, but I couldn't get enough magnification to see the Trapezium. According to Clear Skies tonight should be better.

#130 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 04:03 PM

Rafael:

62x doesn't sound right. Mine has no trouble with 2x that, and 90mm is small aperture. Seeing shouldn't have that great of an effect on it.

Keep us posted, but to me it sounds like something isn't quite "on song" with the scope.

Regards,

Jim

#131 rmollise

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 05:41 PM

Rafael:

62x doesn't sound right. Mine has no trouble with 2x that, and 90mm is small aperture. Seeing shouldn't have that great of an effect on it.

Keep us posted, but to me it sounds like something isn't quite "on song" with the scope.

Regards,

Jim


Seeing is everything. This is not a good time of year. ;)

#132 Eric63

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 06:53 PM

In freezing temperature 30 minutes is not much cool down if the scope was inside. I keep my 127Mak in my garage which is close to freezing and when I take it out it needs at least 30 minutes. If I take out from inside the house, it needs a few hours. Perhaps cool down is the issue. I find that with the 127 I can see bands on jupiter at 50X in poor seeing. When the seeing is good I can go to 180X but when it is bad I keep it at 140X. But I can still make out some detail.

Eric

#133 azure1961p

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 08:36 PM

Give it a fl hours cool down. Thirty minutes is fine for my 70mm refractor but that enclosed primary needs more time .

Pete

#134 mmclure

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 11:58 PM

Since my new tripod (Manfrotto 055XPROB with a 128RC fluid head) arrived today, I took out the C90 for another look. The better tripod/head makes a huge difference to the usability vs. the Velbon Videomate 607 tripod I tested with earlier. It's still not optimal (I need to tighten the altitude axis to keep it from falling back near zenith) but there's very little stiction, and it's quite steady. The tripod has the possibility of setting the column horizontally - that might improve balance issues at the cost of limited azimuth motion.

In any case, the limiting factor was definitely seeing. Jupiter showed moons and both equatorial bands very nicely at 40x, started turning into mush with moments of clarity at 80x. Four stars in the Trapezium were visible at 80x, although they were flashing like Christmas lights due to seeing. All in all, a very nice little scope, and easy to handle. At some point I'll probably purchase an astronomy-specific tripod head like the DwarfStar, but the 128RC is definitely usable.

#135 RafaelP

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 02:08 PM

Colorado was way too cold! I was out for several nights at -10 F, but couldn't take it long enough to view much. Anyways, here is a picture of the C90 on the Dwarfstar mount with the Orion RACI. I also found a little waterproof box with barely enough room for 3 plossls and a barlow(and manages to fit in the little backpack.)

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#136 RafaelP

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 02:10 PM

And the little box...

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#137 bsim

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 07:13 PM

Here's my new Starmax 90 mounted on a Universal Astronomics MicroStar Deluxe and a Bogen 3011 Tripod. I'm using stock accessories but will replace the diagonal with a GSO 1.25" dielectric diagonal. For eyepieces I'll use a TV 32mm Plossl, Pan 24, ES68 20mm & 16mm along with a TV 2x barlow.

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#138 RafaelP

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:48 AM

Looking good!

I kind if wish I had gotten a 9x50 RACI finder scope instead of the 6x30 so I could see more of the faint background stars.

It seems tonight will finally be some OK seeing here in NYC. I think I will try for M103, M78 and Hind's Crimson Star(and Jupiter as usual!) I think I saw M103 last night, but it clouded over before I could make sure.
~Rafael

#139 stevenf

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 12:26 PM

Great photos guys, always love to see how others are mounting their little maks. Rafael I sometimes use a 9x50 with my 90mm mak, works well but it is just a bit big and can throw the scope off balance. I'm actually looking at getting a 6x30 like yours.

#140 t.r.

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 10:51 AM

Just an update...Took the C90 for a spin last night with the dielectric diagonal and a few eyepieces. Scope was mounted on my trusty Jason EQ-2 (Celestron years ago called it the G-3 when mated to the C90) and found it quite stable and user friendly. Jupiter was up and I used the provided finder scope to center on it and used a 40mm plossl for first astronomical light. Even at this low power, the bands were visible although irradiation was annoying. Switched to the 20 SWA briefly and it cut down the glare and sharpened the detail. Then, out came my coveted Leica 7-22 zoom and I was off! Due to the seeing conditions, I couldn't quite get to my usual planetary mags, but I did indeed see quite a bit of detail. The red spot was rotating in, N & S equatorial belts with temperate belts, hints of a festoon and polar hemisphere gradation. No red Jr though this may be asking alot. Oh yeah, and COLOR! This little beauty showed a little bit of belt color to ole Jove! It easily trumped what my C80SS shows for detail and this is why I asked for the C90 for Christmas. I didn't get to the mags I think the scope should be capable of, but I'll let it go blaming the seeing conditions. The moons were alittle messy, so I'm sure the conditions were the culprit. I'm hoping for more good weather to put this little gem through its paces. Its a fun, easy, no fuss grab and go even in my upstate NY winter clime. I did let it aclimate for an hour going from a heated indoors to outside. Collimation is spot on. It does outperform the C80SS, which is a Vixen scope and no slouch with excellent star test. I just wish the C90 had the widefield ability of the SS...Oh well, can't have everything, though I may SBS mount them at some point. It was ironic having a $500 zoom eyepiece sticking out of a $150 mass produced scope...but it works well as a system!

#141 RafaelP

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:15 AM

Steven, I like the 6x30, I can see how the larger finder would tip the C90 off balance.
Last night it was finally clear. I went on the roof again. I was able to get Jupiter to 100x to 150x. It didn't always look good, but there were moments of clarity when I could see more detail! I couldn't find any of my targets posted above, which probably are too faint for the C90, as the darkest nights here are still too way bright(darn CitiBank buiding!) I think I should start saving up for a C6...
I did run across a neat very red star,Tauri 119 , while looking above Orion. I went back to the Orion nebula and the Trapezium too, since those are definitely visible!

#142 jrbarnett

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 06:26 PM

Robo-Mak!

The superhero the Questar 3.5" wishes it could be. :lol:

Posted Image

We actually used the C90 on a CG5 for awhile in the White Mountains last summer.

Posted Image

Regards,

Jim

#143 John Kuraoka

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:27 PM

I'm curious whether the dielectric diagonal was a worthwhile upgrade? I have the Orion 90 Mak-Cas with the stock diagonal.

#144 jrbarnett

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:19 PM

I actually use a vintage Vixen prism diagonal with mine, usually. I find diagonals pretty much fungible to be honest.

Regards,

Jim

#145 RafaelP

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 04:33 PM

John,
I don't know if the upgrade was worth it since it is my first scope, I will try to do a side by side comparison.
R

#146 John Kuraoka

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 06:46 PM

Thanks Rafael! I know the 90mm Mak is really slow, so it would be good to know if the better diagonal actually helps make the most of what's there.

#147 RafaelP

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 08:55 PM

On the roof tonight again for an hour and a half. Went looking for M78 again, no luck. I was able to split Meissa and Lamda Orionis at x132, I pushed it to x150 then even to x200 to confirm. I couldn't make out the colors of the stars though. Checked out Jupiter again, looked great at X132 and okay at x150. High clouds came in and I called it a night.

I think I am getting the hang of using the Mak! I can tell now when it is properly cooled down by doing a star test, there are nice even rings and no heat plume on both sides of focus.

John, I will test out the diagonals during the daytime when it isn't so chilly!

#148 azure1961p

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 09:01 PM

Raf,

I'm looking forward to you getting some phenomenal summer seeing with that c90. During those hot balmy heat waves we get in the north east the seeing can be unparalleled with anything you'll encounter at other times. The cooler months can bring about ok to good seeing, but summer... Those rare once in a lifetime or a year nights where you can't believe your actually seeing it- detail, for me has always been either a July or August night.
I'm sure your scope will be all that when it comes around.

Pete

#149 t.r.

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 08:13 AM

Got in another run with the C90 last night. Slightly better conditions, barely with a thin high altitude veil but steady. Bumped the mag just over 100x, all the same detail as before, caught the red spot again and festoons. I also noticed real nice, hard round airy disks for the moons, similar to what my fine Vixen C80SS produces. I like it better for planetary than my C80SS for sure. Had a Meade 90 ETX RA years ago and this is better. It is also better than the older C90 I had with twist focus...NO VIBRATION! Can't wait to check out Luna. As Pete points out, I think with better seeing this little puppy is gonna rock! :rockon: The beauty of this little guy is in its simplicity and ease of use for quick looks, this time right after dinner for an hour.Problem is, now my C6 is sitting idle while I play with this to learn its potential! My "big" scopes (AP130 and C11) stay in for the winter! :p

#150 RafaelP

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 10:43 AM

t.r.- I haven't been able to see that much detail on Jupiter, festoons etc., just the three dark bands so far. Hopefully when seeing improves!






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